What To Expect When Recovering From Liposuction

By Dr. Deane on April 16, 2023 under Liposuction

What To Expect When Recovering From Liposuction

While diet and exercise may work for some, it’s not always effective for everyone. Many people turn to liposuction to help them get the results they’re looking for. But what happens after the procedure? What is the recovery process like? How long does it take to see results? And what can you do to aid in your recovery? Let’s take an in-depth look at what happens after liposuction and how you can ensure the best results possible.

After Liposuction

After liposuction, you’ll likely feel some discomfort and see some bruising, redness, and swelling. The discomfort will be treated with prescription medication and a compression garment is often recommended to help with swelling and overall healing. The type of compression garment depends on the area of the body treated.

After the first week, swelling will begin to go down but that doesn’t mean you should stop wearing the compression garment. Keep it on for at least four weeks, or more if your doctor recommends it. But that doesn’t mean you have to take a month or more off of work. After the first few days, you can return to work if you’re feeling up to it.

As for scars, during the procedure, there are small incisions made in order to remove excess fat cells. These incisions are small and your doctor will place them in inconspicuous areas so they are less noticeable. You will receive some instructions on how to care for your incision to minimize scarring and ensure you don’t get an infection.

After the surgery, you’ll also have at least a few follow-up appointments to check on your progress. Make sure to keep those to ensure you’re healing properly.


Because there will be swelling and some fluid retention after liposuction, you’re unlikely to see results immediately. Don’t panic. But as the swelling starts to go down and the fluid releases, you will begin to see the results you’re looking for.

You may also notice some sagging skin where the incisions were made. That is completely normal. It will tighten up but it takes time. That said, skin tightening surgery may need to be done if a significant amount of fat was removed or your skin isn’t as elastic.

Depending on how much fat was removed, you’ll likely see noticeable results in 1-3 months.

Ways to Aid in Recovery

While full recovery from liposuction can take weeks or months, there are a few things you can do to assist the healing process and ensure you’re getting the best results.

Take a Walk

While this may seem counterintuitive after getting surgery, walking or any light movement can help your recovery. As long as you feel up to it and your doctor is okay with it, short walks a week or more after liposuction can get your body moving and speed up the recovery process a little bit. Just make sure you aren’t pushing yourself too far.

Taking Necessary Medications

This may seem obvious, but make sure you take all the medications your doctor prescribes. Whether they are for pain, infection, or something else, they are prescribing them for a reason. And if you need to take any over-the-counter pain medication, call your doctor to ensure it’s okay.

Ask For Help

If you’re typically the main caregiver in your house, this may be difficult, but after liposuction surgery, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Whether it be help taking a shower, making meals, or taking care of kids, reach out to loved ones. Chances are they will be more than happy to help out while you’re recovering.

Eat Well and Hydrate

To heal quickly and properly, you need energy from healthy foods and hydration from water. And since you’re unlikely to want to cook in the days after liposuction, try to prep meals ahead of time. Make sure to include plenty of fruits and vegetables. They can limit inflammation and aid in your recovery. And if you get tired of plain water, you can always add some of that fruit to what you’re drinking as well.

Schedule A Consultation

Liposuction can completely change how you feel about yourself and how you look. It can significantly boost your confidence. If it sounds like the right option for you, Dr. Deane and his staff are more than happy to walk you through each step of the procedure and answer any questions you may have.

To schedule a consultation today, contact us at one of our three New York offices or use our online form.